…sometimes I just sits.

‘Sometimes I sits and thinks but sometimes i just sits’ to quote the converstaion of two old gents sitting on a park bench. That is very apt for me today as I am recovering from having 70 visitors coming to my house to view my paintings and studio over the bank holiday weekend.

I think I will do quite a lot just sitting in the sun today  though  I may mow the lawn before it becomes a hayfield.

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My moss

In one of the Swallows and Amazons books I read as a child an uncle entitles his book of memoirs  ‘Mixed Moss by a Rolling Stone’ alluding to the saying ‘A rolling stone gathers no moss’. This has always tickled my fancy so I thought over the next few posts I would like to share some of my visual mixed moss.

The first is little painting which is slightly smaller than A4, by New Zealand artist Nathan Rose which was acquired when we in stayed in an artists village in the Napier area in 2004/5.

I like this work because Nathan has captured in his strange hybrid little figure a sense of excruciating shyness and embarrassment which draws out a sympathetic response from me bordering on fondness. I can’t view this painting without thinking of Nathan and wondering what he is doing now as all the lovely memories of my time as an artist resident in the Waiohiki Arts Village come flooding back.

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The next  item is two mounted  swatches of Henry Moore fabric which we framed in light oak. Moore is better known for his sculpture but he produced a number of textile designs which the Ascher company printed for him. My swatches are from two rolls reprinted from Ascher’s original blocks and used to refurbish Henry Moore’s House. With the left over fabric 50 mounted squares  of each were sold by Pallent House  Gallery where an exhibition of Moore’s textiles and sketch books was held. I couldn’t resist as they were reasonably priced and now I have two little bits of Henry to remind my of my student days when he was all the go.

 

 

 

 

 

 

The third Item  is a painting entitled Blue by artist Pat Bell  and bought as a birthday gift for my husband. I first met Pat on Flickr and friended her when I joined facebook. Pat has done a series of sheep paintings which have proved popular and blue is one of them, She also has a stream of wonderful abstacts based on stones and tangled landscapes.

Pats  website address is:  – www.pat-bell.com

Blue by Pat Bell

Fourth is a large Zambian pot used for brewing the local Chibuku beer in  villages. Real village pots have different shapes depending of their function. A beer pot always has two handles. Different members of the family had their particular shapes. This is a coil pot made without a wheel and I particularly like the charred patch where it was in the fire pit. The incised decoration has some of the ash from the fire rubbed into it. We didn’t bring much in the way of artifacts back with us from Zambia but this was well worth the effort.

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The 5th item is also from  Zambia and was sent to us out of the blue from someone who bought some of my paintings over 45 years ago whilst we lived there. She had searched for me on the internet and renewed contact and as she was downsizing thought we would like this little naive painting of St Anne’s church in Mazabuka where we lived. It was done by a local man  on a piece of ply using house paints.

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Number 6 is my indulgence and is a painting called ‘In All Directions’ by Fran Donovan, part of a series with same title. I went to a preview of Fran’s exhibition in the Russel Gallery in Bournmouth with my daughter and  fell in love with this colourful painting. Fran works in oils using raw pigments applied over a soft  ground  and the result has a wonderful glowing quality. This painting has elements of a wide landscape but only hinted at and the suggestion of an  upward path seems to lead one over a distanf hill top horizon. In the foreground hedgerow plants and a fence are just suggested. To me its very positive work and I love the bright orange.

Egged on  by my daughter I took the plunge and bought the 90x90cm painting and today it cheers me every day in my kitchen diner.

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Number 7 is a painting by Sussex artist Sue England entitled ‘Can you hear them, can you hear them coming through the vines?’ which is inspired by Sue’s visit to friend’s vineyard.

My husband and I bought this as a Christmas gift to ourselves last year as it reminded us of a walk amoung the vines in Cyprus many years ago but also because we like Sue’s work and fell in love with it.

Link to Sue’s website: http://www.sueengland.co.uk

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Art Trail time again!

It doesn’t seem long since I started this blog over a year ago and its time for my annual Marathon, not running, but getting ready for the trail. ‘It can’t be too difficult to hang a few pictures up’ I hear you say. Weeeell, you would be surprised how much there is to do:

Cleaning the windows, we live near the sea and get salt blown on them during storms and there is no point hanging pictures if folks can’t see them. Then there is the matter of my very dirty house, as cleaning seems to come at the bottom of my list of interesting things to do. Mounting and framing mono-prints and pastels, labelling them, making sure I have an up to date inventory as there is nothing worse than having to make up prices and details on the spot. All that is before I take down all our paintings ready to hang mine.  Unpacking the paintings from my studio which is a log cabin the garden and turning four rooms in our house into temporary galleries. On top of all that I need to get my studio tidied at least so that folks can get into it. Not much to do really!

I set my hand to the plough…

At the start of the year in a fit of resolutionitis I decided to do some sort of artwork every day for 2016. I have done this before and found it rather productive acting as a seed bed for more sustained works. I’ve been posting this on my Facebook page, putting up whatever I have managed to do each day. The crunch comes when at 11pm I realise I have not done anything for the day. This has resulted in me venturing into the digital wilderness. I have nothing against digital art, just mine, which is very basic. By chance, and most of what I do digitally is by chance, I discovered Mandala and kaleidoscope tools in the effects kit of my editing programme. So late at night in desperation I have used this on some of my paintings to fulfil my resolve to do something each day. The results are rather beautiful.

French Adventure

Until recently I had not travelled in France apart from the airport and a brief visit to Paris But recently I was in Charente visiting my daughter. Their rented house is right on the river on an estate with a number of buildings falling into attractive decay. The avenue of trees which was at one time the grand entrance caught my artist’s eye and I couldn’t resist going back agin and again to take photos.